Meet Jane Doe

OC's most famous sexual-assault victim breaks her silence on the 10th anniversary of the Haidl gang rape

"I did that?" Doe asks me, smiling.

(Well, you had some pivotal help from Haidl, Nachreiner and Spann.)

It's true the elder Haidl, Jaramillo and Carona were not present during the gang rape, but their ham-fisted efforts to wreck the prosecution not only backfired, but also undermined their once-impenetrable alliance. The tensions of the case exposed deep personality conflicts, and those rifts ultimately provided details about non-Doe scandals and crimes, information that fueled my newspaper columns and the investigatory files for suspicious IRS and FBI agents.

The impact of the Carona-Jaramillo-Haidl breakup can't be underestimated. In 2002, for example, CNN's Larry King named Carona "America's Sheriff" following the kidnapping, rape and murder of a 5-year-old Stanton girl. There was political-insider talk of converting the self-styled "Christian conservative" sheriff's overwhelmingly positive public image into a Republican campaign to unseat U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer or serve as Arnold Schwarzenegger's lieutenant governor. President George W. Bush placed him in a top homeland-security advisory post.

Before the sexual assault, Jaramillo—a onetime Garden Grove cop—made no secret of wanting to be elected sheriff on his way to becoming California's first Latino governor. Haidl, the least personable and, obviously, wealthiest of the trio, was content to bankroll his buddies' rise in power. He just wanted their influence for personal favors—say, if a criminal matter arose or an investment tip was needed.

But, thanks to the gangbang rape of Doe, all their dreams crashed. Carona is now a 66-month resident of a federal prison in Colorado following a corruption conviction. Jaramillo is out of custody, but only after serving both state and federal prison stints that would have been longer if he hadn't ratted out Carona. Haidl, who was caught writing off his son's legal defense as a fraudulent tax deduction, made out the best; after agreeing to surreptitiously wear a government body wire to record Carona discussing coverup efforts, he avoided prison and today enjoys mansion life in Las Vegas and Newport Coast.

* * *

Your typical rape victim endures enormous pain, but what Doe experienced was unforgivable. In addition to the intimidation campaign and the embarrassing national exposure, she had to sit for hours in the witness chair while Haidl's defense lawyers called her names and played (and replayed) on courtroom monitors a video of her vaginal and anal exam after the crime. Private investigators parked in front of her house and tailed her parents to work. According to law-enforcement sources, Haidl's emissaries offered secret deals to buy her silence.

"There was intimidation," she says. "I think they were hoping I wouldn't testify or that maybe I would settle out of court before it went to trial. No. That's not what I was going to do. I felt like they deserved to pay for what they did, and I felt that prison was the only true way to pay."

Doe even felt afraid for her life. One night between the first hung-jury trial in 2004 and the second successful one in 2006, a female neighbor who looks like Doe was ambushed and severely beaten in the face and head with a rock. The assault abruptly ended, and the mysterious man fled after the victim yelled, "I'm not [Doe's first name]!"

"My neighbor is sure that I was the intended victim that night," Doe tells me while seated on a sofa inside the residence of DA chief of staff Susan Kang Schroeder, which, ironically, is just 900 feet from the 2002 crime scene at 1 Jade Cove, Haidl's former home. "She thinks that if I had been the one attacked, the guy wouldn't have stopped until I was dead."

Though she escaped the madman, Doe admits she contributed to her post-rape collapse.

"I never knew what meth was before the assault," she says. "After the assault, I wanted to escape. I didn't know who I was anymore. My innocence was gone. It was completely taken away from me. In one night, I had lost everything I knew. I was shunned and scorned. People treated me like I was the perpetrator. I wanted to numb myself. I didn't want to feel the pain anymore. Unfortunately, I found meth."

For three years, while the case languished in court proceedings, Doe let the meth take control. "I got really bad," she says. "It was killing me. It took me to places that I would have never gone."

The lowest point was June 28, 2004, the day her parents informed her the first jury had deadlocked in Superior Court Judge Francisco Briseño's Santa Ana courtroom. (See my column titled "Justice Takes a Pool Cue," July 8, 2004.)

"At that point, I felt like it was over, and [the defendants] had won, and they were going to get away with it even though there was a videotape of what they did," she says. "I thought there was no hope. I just couldn't grasp the idea that they could have gotten a hung jury. But that's okay because we had a second trial, and they lost. I got justice, which is all that matters."

* * *

The law in California is unequivocal: A person can't have sexual relations with another person who is incapable of giving consent. That means, for example, that a man is guilty of sexual assault if he takes a woman home from a bar where they'd been drinking heavily, they smooch, he watches her pass out, and then initiates sex acts.

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96 comments
18usc241
18usc241 topcommenter

Don Haidl, who was caught writing off his son's legal defense as a fraudulent tax deduction, made out the best; after agreeing to surreptitiously wear a government body wire to record Carona discussing coverup efforts, he avoided prison and today enjoys mansion life in Las Vegas and Newport Coast."

And then he died at age 61 the following year. Just thought I'd update this paragraph.

vnovac
vnovac

For all the supporters of the rapists:

So, I guess it's cool the next time I see one of you guys passed out at a party I can just shove anything and everything up your ass, video tape it and "let it slip" into the public eye because hey, you were asking for it when you got too shitfaced to stay awake at my party? 

I'm sure if it was a woman who had sexually assaulted a man by shoving pool sticks and soda cans up his ass, this would be a whole different argument.   

Cottonwood
Cottonwood

JANE DOE IS MY HERO!  ex-friend and ladybug789 need to see a doctor about hysterical personality disorder. There's medication for that.

duckpost1963
duckpost1963

Good article.  Hard to believe that the poor brave girl is still being attacked.  As correctly pointed out, even though she may not have been an angel and may have made judgement mistakes, this was not the issue at the trial.  The FACT is that she was not conscious throughout the whole episode.  To suggest she was just acting is beyond ludicrous.  I would challenge anyone to be such a good actress as to not move or bat an eyelid through such humiliation and punishment.  Having suffered through the attack and the verbal and emotional abuse of two trials, she is attacked again for appearing in public to try to encourage a change so future women are protected.

The real tragedy, though, is that the recent news from India, Steubinville and elsewhere suggest that, to date, the effect has been muted.

ex-friend
ex-friend

It's sad that all of you buy into this b.s. story. She slept with all 3 of those boys on the 4th of July & then drove back down the next night w/o any of her friends this time, so she could "party" with them again. She told them she wanted to get wasted - she had a pillow under her head while on the pool table - she was holding her legs up in the air... But she was unconscious? Don't think so. & she didn't even want them to go to jail - she fought & cried for the DA to drop the charges once the video came out. & that video was found by mistake!! The boys were not bragging or showing it to people. MONEY TALKS!! Just remember that. She took Greg's family to civil court & sued for millions & won!! She is the one who changed her story. None of us girls who testified against her got anything out of it!! We were slandered in the media as well. & for what? Doing the right thing? We all told the truth & sat back & watched her lie so that she could be "set for life" (which were her words after sleeping with Greig & joking about what would happen if she got pregnant). Scott Moxley should get his story straight before he posts shit like this.

Yomammama
Yomammama

Well are we not force fed from school and the media that we humans are mearly highly evolved bacteria, that turned to a fish, then turned to a monkey? Sounds like animals being animals to me, mating is what drives us wild animals. Females evolved to be weaker so that the dominate males can reproduce. Thank you public school education for helping us realize we have no purpose but to survive and reproduce, we are just wild animals. Would you prosecute a stray dog that humps your dog? What's the difference?This is just nature...

Luncroom Lady
Luncroom Lady

Dear Men,

Touch a woman without her express permission, go to jail. Don't like it, find another species.

Sincerely,

Women Everywhere

Robert Mueller
Robert Mueller

I really don't see why she is such a shero. It's bad that she was taken advantage of but if a guy blacked out and had sex with someone else who was shitfaced, he'd still be responsible for his actions. When all the alcohol and drugs were involved, no one was in their right mind. Sorry but being a victim is not a thing to be proud of especially when her choices got her into a bad sitch.

Theosofina Huxley-cadieux
Theosofina Huxley-cadieux

The whole grotesque situation bears a striking resemblance to the recent Aldana case-not the nature of the crime, but the response to the victim. Also, there's an old OC Register interview with Kyle Nachreiner that may interest you: http://www.ocregister.com/arti...

R. J. Steelworth
R. J. Steelworth

This case cemented Joe Cavalo as the #1 scum bag attorney on the OC. I'm sure Joe would say he was just aggressively representing his client. Cavalo's conduct during the trial is a story in it self.

jimpeel
jimpeel

The law in CA that forbids having sex with someone who is incapacitated due to inebriants also extends to those who lack the mental capacity to give permission to have sex such as those who are retarded or mentally disabled.

guest
guest

What a courageous young woman. Thank you for being so brave.

Mike C
Mike C

I know this story should be uplifting but I feel sick inside right now. I am happy she is enduring and moving on but somehow, anything less than these guys getting stuff shoved up their rear ends too seems less than justice. And another thing, I know that the Constitution affords everyone a defense but there have to be some limits. How do these guys (defendants or lawyers) sleep at night? Good luck Doe and I frankly hope these clowns get their true justice in the end.

Koi
Koi

I simply cannot imagine a penalty severe enough that would be adequate for such crimes. The 3 perps should, as psychopaths, never be released. Ever. They are a menace to society.

Dweezle.Di
Dweezle.Di

This shows how the OC Weekly and Village Voice Media are so important! Scott Moxley, Nick Schou, et al will dig into the stories main stream media choose to ignore, (for either financial or political reasons). When victims have been long forgotten by the main stream media OC weekly will remind us the victims still exist and all the others will jump on the band wagon

I am curious when you guys will go after the gang activities in OC specifically the Costa Mesa City Hall to uncover the ringleaders of the biggest organized crime ring in Southern Calif with names like.. oopsie

Kc
Kc

Never heard about this case. Wow! Sounds a bit similar to the current behavior of the Amazing Spider Man art director in his sexual battery case.

bizwhiz
bizwhiz

Kudos R. Scott Moxley for a powerful piece!

I can see now that I'll be spending the next few hours reading all of the past articles that give the complete backstory of this incredible nightmarish period in this "Jane Doe's" story.

And Alisa (who provided her first name yesterday in a speech- *link below), you should be so proud of yourself, because we all are--- women and men alike--- for your showing the courage to seek justice despite the adversity you endured. You have a voice and a story that will give hope and strength to others who have been abused and hopefully inspire them to follow your lead in seeking justice.

For the author and fellow readers: I don't do the Twitter thing yet, but I hope someone who does will tweet a link to this story to a group of men serving our nation who need to hear this message. The following is a list of the 31 senators, all of whom are Republicans, who voted AGAINST the VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN ACT earlier this week in Congress.

Barrasso (R-WY)Blunt (R-MO)Boozman (R-AR)Burr (R-NC)Chambliss (R-GA)Coburn (R-OK)Cochran (R-MS)Cornyn (R-TX)DeMint (R-SC)Enzi (R-WY)Graham (R-SC) Grassley (R-IA)Hatch (R-UT)Inhofe (R-OK)Isakson (R-GA)Johanns (R-NE)Johnson (R-WI)Kyl (R-AZ)Lee (R-UT)Lugar (R-IN)McConnell (R-KY)Moran (R-KS) Paul (R-KY)Risch (R-ID)Roberts (R-KS)Rubio (R-FL)Sessions (R-AL)Shelby (R-AL)Thune (R-SD)Toomey (R-PA)Wicker (R-MS

*http://blogs.ocweekly.com/nave...

Fira
Fira

You know, after reading this I couldn't tell you specificly what happened to the guys. Obviously they went to jail, but it wasn't really said. Most of this was just a shock article about her suffering, which isn't respectful to her. Rather than reliving the whole case again, how about you focus on the fact that it's ten years later and she's doing great? She's in school, her life is back on track, and if people would stop bringing up her case she could live normally.

505doggie
505doggie

@ex-friend I have never heard of anyone wanting to be "Gang Banged" your intire argument is folish. What if this was to happen to you? As former friends of this girl, you should have been there for her. I can understand as a young group of girls to do the wrong thing and to not fully understand the positon you should take on such a serous case. After such a long time it would be best for you to admit you are wrong and have some closure or you will let anger build up in you for the rest of your life. 

GustavoArellano
GustavoArellano moderator editortopcommenter

@ex-friend The only shit here is your comment and your morals.

rscottmoxley
rscottmoxley topcommenter

@ex-friendYou, my dear, are a despicable liar. I'm going to ignore your more stupid, juvenile rants, but I cannot remain silent about your most offensive and dishonest statement. I covered every second of both trials and know this case better than any other journalist. There was never, ever factual information that Jane Doe willingly posed on the pool table while they raped her and repeatedly shoved a pool stick, apple juice can, Snapple bottle and lit cigarette into her vagina and anus. Indeed, despite your lie, the video proves--as the prosecutor, judge, appellate justices, supreme court judges and jury agreed--she was unconscious during the attack. You "Mean Girls" (please see my article about your laughable testimony -- http://www.ocweekly.com/2005-03-17/news/mean-girls-the-sequel/) -- were disgraceful human beings who did everything you could to betray Jane Doe because all you could see was Greg Haidl's millions. Weak. Sick. Low life scum behavior. How can you live with yourself? You're now in your 20s and a woman and yet mock a rape victim. Like it or not, honey, it is illegal for three men to have sex with a 16-year-old girl who is unconscious--regardless of whether she would have consented or not if she had been awake. Can you wrap your little brain around the importance of that legal concept? I'm guessing the answer is no. Are you still making a play for Greg? He does owe you.

HominidX
HominidX

@ex-friend You mean what happened and was proven in court?

Whatever, rape-apologist.  I hope everything you love dies slowly.

colette_wedding
colette_wedding

"But she was unconscious? Don't think so." So for all of your (load of nothing) verbiage, it is telling you can't even bring yourself to textually deny she was unconscious. Which is probably because you're unable to lie to yourself but reluctant to admit it even through the safety of the internet. Kudos, lol.

ladybug789
ladybug789

This is all pretty sad that people believe what the media portrays and just because she is a 'woman' doesn't mean what she says is so. Just because someone says something doesn't make it so. There are always 3 sides to ever story. Her side, boys side and the TRUTH. Sorry to tell all you ignorant people but when drugging/drinking comes into any picture anything is possible... all your moral fiber goes out the window. You lose all the depth of the moral instinct you have naturally and will do just about anything. This is the stuff that happens when people are intoxicated... and not to mention 17. Not saying it's okay whatsoever, however, they ALL played a part in what happened. You put yourself in a situation with 3 boys... you could of left. No one forced you to stay. You drank, you drugged and you bragged about being a porn star. What do you think is going to happen in a situation like that. No one is a victim here in this case. It happens to alot of people. Drinking/drugs are a powerful thing and ruin alot of peoples lives and you do stuff under the influence that you wouldn't ever do sober. Everyone has a part in what happened. Maybe next time... don't put yourself in a situation like that.... sorry.

frankpettit
frankpettit

@Yomammama:

 Oh, so scientists and public school teachers are to blame for the crimes committed by conservative Christians?

Sheriff Carona was a conservative Christian and he did everything he could to get the rapists off the hook.

It is the conservative Christian culture that teaches people to be obsequious and obedient towards authority, because authority is ordained by God [Romans 13].

It is the conservative Christian culture that says women should be subservient to men and not speak up. It is the conservative Christian culture that makes people hate women and female sexuality, even the sexuality of UNCONSCIOUS women, as a women who has sex is a slut, even if she's unconscious at the time. 

 It is the conservative Christian culture that says Eve ate an apple, causing all the evils of the world.

Secondly, animals in the wild often cooperate, primates feel compassion and empathy. If you want to argue that compassion and empathy appeared by magic, then God did some magic on other mammal species besides us.  The theory of evolution doesn't tell you which of the many diverse animal behaviors we ought to imitate.

The people in OC were all obsequious and obedient to corrupt male authority, like the Bible demands.

Robert Mueller
Robert Mueller

Dear Women,

Don't get falling down drunk with a bunch of immature idiots and act surpriesed than bad things happen. Don't like it, stay sober and be responsible.

Best,

Men

Amne1
Amne1

How does that absolve the perpetrators of guilt? Personally, I don't think someone's decision to become intoxicated nullifies their right to be a victim if they've been horrifically attacked, and I certainly don't think that gives the perpetrators a green light to behave like monstrous psychopaths. Even IF Doe made a few mistakes that night, how can you have so little sympathy for her, and how can you ignore the behavior of those animals? What if you went to a party one night, got so drunk that you passed out, and then was quietly taken to some guy's house who proceeded to anal rape you? Does that mean you're responsible? Does that mean you don't have a right to call the police and press charges and see your rapist imprisoned?

And she never said she was proud of being a victim, she said she was proud for LIVING through the hell that was thrown at her by ruthless elitists.

rscottmoxley
rscottmoxley topcommenter

@Theosofina Huxley-cadieux  There are few things more despicable than an Orange County Register hack trolling for web hits by trying to lure readers from my article to a disturbingly sympathetic Register story about one of the rapists. No wonder you posted under a fake name. Pathetic.

Bill T.
Bill T.

This is why I, an out-of-towner, read it. I just wish they had the staff and other resources to cover a wider beat, more wishful thinking than criticism. That reason, and the conversation supported and encouraged by the Weekly.

gustavoarellano
gustavoarellano

We have and will—did you miss Moxley's piece on Riggy using the Register to defend him from Mox?

Bill T.
Bill T.

Thanks for the info. There are times it is not right to include a URL in a post and times it is.

Thanks OCW for letting us include appropriate links.

stubby11
stubby11

The fact that you think a victim of a crime like this can just go on with their lives shows how little comprehension you have of the crime.

Simon Johnston
Simon Johnston

Clearly you have an issue with reading comprehension.

R. Scott Moxley
R. Scott Moxley

Try re-reading the sixth sentence in the article. By the way, Jane Doe doesn't agree with you. She thanked me for the story.

colette_wedding
colette_wedding

 @ladybug789

 It has nothing to do with being a woman. It has to do with the fact that you're not allowed to perform sexual acts on an unconscious person. Cry and scream about it all you want.

GustavoArellano
GustavoArellano moderator editortopcommenter

@Robert Mueller Dear Moron: The Orange County Register called—they want their idiot back.

rscottmoxley
rscottmoxley topcommenter

@Robert MuellerLike the rest of us, Jane Doe is not perfect but she's a hero because she endured intense pressures for years to remain silent about the assault--pressure that I suspect you have never endured; she did so as a teenager with wealthy, evil people wanting to constantly hurt her for telling the truth. And she emerged from all of it a decent person. I couldn't care less about what you think of her, but I know that I will never forget her strength. Is it really that difficult to understand that a man should not take advantage of an incapacitated woman, even if she drinks too much or smokes too much? Only a creep would think they could justifiably take advantage of such a situation. "Bobby Mueller" are you such as creep? I know of three convicted idiots who thought like you....

genrebender23
genrebender23

@Robert Mueller Nice way to dodge responsibility for acts of rape. Do you make excuses for child molesters too? Clearly in your world it's only 'responsible' for women to protect themselves from bad situations, but men having responsibility for their violent actions nowhere on your radar. Methinks you doth protest too much. If you can't keep your dick in your pants then maybe YOU should be responsible enough to not put it in situations where you might force yourself on someone unable to give consent. Otherwise don't come crying to us and acting surprised when the law throws your lily white as** in the slammer.

Mcmoonery
Mcmoonery

I'm sorry you are a bad person and can't control yourself. I think you should seek counseling.

Dweezle.Di
Dweezle.Di

I do not know where you are located, but I believe Village Voice media has papers in most every state and major metro area. I know there is the LA Weekly, Phoenix New Times, and I have linked with other VV papers in other states (even TX).

Dweezle.Di
Dweezle.Di

yes, I saw it, a small squabble... I am waiting for the BIG exposé!

Bill T.
Bill T.

I liked your comment even better the second time. ;-)

R. Scott Moxley
R. Scott Moxley

By the way "Fira": Stop pretending you know what's best for Jane Doe. She obviously wanted to do the interview as part of her recovery. Otherwise, I wouldn't have had anyone to interview. Makes sense with a wee bit of thought, no?

k.Qadafi
k.Qadafi

Compassion, intelligence and justice. Look those terms up because you have no familiarity with those concepts.

Bill T.
Bill T.

I don't live in the middle of no where but you can see it from where I live ...

Bill T.
Bill T.

Well, that's weird, the first time I loaded the comments your comment was duplicated (happens some times).

rscottmoxley
rscottmoxley topcommenter

@Robert Mueller Hey, Bobby Mueller: Anytime you want to be screwed by a pool stick, apple juice can, Snapple bottle and lit cigarette, just give me a call and you too can have attention.

genrebender23
genrebender23

@Robert Mueller Right, that's what rape victims are in it for. The ATTENTION. I'm betting you're a Men's Rights Activist.

Wearetheoneinfive
Wearetheoneinfive

As a rape survivor, I think this was one of the best articles I've read on the subject. I found it incredibly moving and empowering. I am a blogger and have a 501(c)3 for victims and survivor of sexual trauma, and I am working on a post based on your article-I would love if you could pass my contact info on to Jane Doe. She can email me at Rebecca@Treeclimbersinc.org.

Thank you for doing this story.

 
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